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The Story Of Most Surreal Victory Against Australia, but how incredible it was?

It was still not believable that a team like Bangladesh could've humiliated the great Australia team of Ricky Ponting. Here we look back at the story of the most surreal victory against Australia.

Last updated: 08.03.2021
The Story Of Most Surreal Victory Against Australia by Bangladesh in ODI

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16 years ago, When one team was still not considered as a cricket team like the other teams, they had finally ended that myth with the most stunning performance ever in the minnows cricket history against the most dominating team of that era. Upset would be the word for most of them to depict the emotions of this victory but no it was not just the victory it was the start of something impossible in world cricket history – very rare.


It was the miracle to think about beating the invincible team of Ricky Ponting at the times when they were at the pinnacle of surreal heights. Bangladesh was still into the early days of their cricket career existence and tried to prove their presence in cricket was not absurd. The triangular tournament between hosts (England) and the visitors Bangladesh and Australia.



For the team like Australia it was complete difficult times as they had earlier lost the Ashes Series of 2005 after a long time when the player like Glenn McGrath had predicted already the 5-0 series win before the series started. With only a T-20l game in the series, Australia had lost that too against England by the margin of 100 runs. So things were not good in the Australia camp. Although England and Australia were the favourites to play the final of Natwest Series but it wasn’t that easy for the world champions to make their way to the finals.


Australia Start of NatWest Series was Derailed by Bangladesh


It was still not believable that a team like Bangladesh could've humiliated the great Australia team of Ricky Ponting. For the next one decade, it was the only victory of Bangladesh over Australia across the formats so how much unpredictable this game of cricket can be on his day. This game of Bangladesh against Australia at Cardiff in 2005 depicts who had back then just few victories in ODI cricket against a weak team like Zimbabwe.


Australia Captain Ricky Ponting won the toss and decided to bat first without any uncertainty about this decision. Everyone was expecting Bangladesh to be at the receiving end from the start of the match but the wicket on the second ball of Adam Gilchrist by Mortaza was the first sign of something impossible to happen. Soon after, Ricky Ponting was back to shed when he was caught in front of wickets by Tapash Baisaya and left Australia at 9/2.


But it was Australia who knew how to bounce back and that’s what they did with the valuable contribution from the middle order batsman Australia went on to score 249 runs for the loss of 5 wickets in their 50 overs. Damien Martyn (77) and Michael Clarke (54) provided the much needed resistance after the early wickets and at the end some short cameos from Simon Katich 36*and Michael Hussey 31* who both remained unbeaten and added 66 runs off 36 balls.


The target of 250 runs for Bangladesh was not going to be easy at all against the pace attack of Glenn McGrath, Jason Gillespie, Brad Hogg and Michael Kasprowicz. Bangladesh got off to a worst start like Australia and was at the back foot with 72/3 by the end of 20 overs.


Now it's a matter of a few more overs before Australia easily register the win over Bangladesh. But Mohammad Ashraful and captain Habibul Bashar had other ideas for the Chase.


"When we started off, neither of us were even bothered about the total. We tried our best to stay there and play out 50 overs. That's all we told ourselves - don't get out. When I am well set I play the faster bowlers well while Bashar plays the spinners well. So we tried to rotate the strike that way", Ashraful had revealed about his partnership with Bashar in an interview with ESPNCricinfo. 


And both the batsmen started something impossible to believe about with their spirited cricket, some of glorious shots were witnessed by the Bangladesh batsman. On the score of 54, Mohammad Ashraful was dropped by Jason Gillespie don’t know why and that turned out to be the biggest mistake of Australia and both of them added 130 runs stand partnership for the fourth wicket to bring Bangladesh back into the hunt. The young Bangladesh batsman Ashraful took on the charge and smashed the second century by any Bangladesh batsman of that time – and what a feeling it was to smash a hundred against the world champions.


But Gillespie who dropped him later got the wicket of Ashraful after the century from the batsman but damage had been done by Bangladesh. The rest of the work was completed by Aftab Ahmad and Mohammad Rafique to register famous over Australia by 5 wickets in hands and never let the effort of Mohammad Ashraful go into vain.


It has given us confidence to play against the best. We needed to win in the one-day series after doing badly in the Tests. There was a lot of talk about how we should not play international cricket and we were under tremendous pressure. We knew we had to put up a good fight against Australia. Winning was a fantastic bonus", Ashraful spoke about the big win to ESPNCricinfo at the time.

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